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Old 11-04-2014, 02:44 AM   #1
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

The game time modifier for traits such as Luck has a lot to recommend it. If nothing else it's pretty much required for a pbp game. There is a disadvantage though since this means losing the tie between amount of rerolls and implicit interest in the events being played out. Thus the inclusion of the rather obvious "The GM may adjust these ratios."

Personally given the sort of campaigns I've been involved in historically only a small minority of characters wouldn't be seriously disadvantaged by the switch from real time to game time so I'd like to adjust the ratio.

Has anyone experimented with this?
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Old 11-04-2014, 11:41 AM   #2
Gnome
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Cambridge, MA
Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

One thought is to measure time narratively rather than game time vs. real time. For example, you could give Luck x uses per encounter.
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Old 11-04-2014, 12:05 PM   #3
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

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Originally Posted by Gnome View Post
One thought is to measure time narratively rather than game time vs. real time. For example, you could give Luck x uses per encounter.
Oh certainly you could have them recharge by encounters, or more generically by scenes. It's kind of awkward to introduce scene counting to a game only for a small subset of advantages though and scene counting seems to me to promote a sense of distance from the character even more than meta advantages like (most varieties of) luck do in the first place.

What I had in mind was something in much the same vein as the normal game time modifier but. say. 24 times as fast in recharging. This is the sort of thing that can really use practical reports though.
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Old 11-04-2014, 12:16 PM   #4
johndallman
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
What I had in mind was something in much the same vein as the normal game time modifier but. say. 24 times as fast in recharging. This is the sort of thing that can really use practical reports though.
The difficulty is the enormous variation in the rate of passage of game time. Significant amount of time passing between scenarios should not be a problem, but it's very easy for "You travel for two nights and hide during the day" to happen during one session, while another session only lasts ten minutes of game time. So it's going to depend a lot on campaign style, and still more on the individual events of a session. If they're similar enough to generalise across, you may have a cliché problem.
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Old 11-04-2014, 12:47 PM   #5
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

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The difficulty is the enormous variation in the rate of passage of game time. Significant amount of time passing between scenarios should not be a problem, but it's very easy for "You travel for two nights and hide during the day" to happen during one session, while another session only lasts ten minutes of game time. So it's going to depend a lot on campaign style, and still more on the individual events of a session. If they're similar enough to generalise across, you may have a cliché problem.
Well yes it's going to depend on campaign style, that's the point. I'm hoping someone has tried out different ratios to reflect campaign paces other than the implicit one chosen in gurps powers.

You can always generalize a rate no matter the campaign although, of course, some will function better having done this. I also feel that regularity of time passage is far too abstract a feature to be a cliché.
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Old 11-04-2014, 01:03 PM   #6
johndallman
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
I'm hoping someone has tried out different ratios to reflect campaign paces other than the implicit one chosen in gurps powers.
Yes ... but meaningfully describing campaign pace, so that you can scale it to yours, may not be trivial. Describing your campaign style up front would avoid getting less-relevant offerings.
Quote:
I also feel that regularity of time passage is far too abstract a feature to be a cliché.
If, however, your session structure always goes something like "Small fight, travel, larger fight, search, boss fight" that gets to be a cliché.
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Old 11-04-2014, 01:21 PM   #7
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

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Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
Yes ... but meaningfully describing campaign pace, so that you can scale it to yours, may not be trivial. Describing your campaign style up front would avoid getting less-relevant offerings.
That's true. I don't have actual data on this sort of thing but I can try to sketch out things some. My campaign pacing tends to be heavily influenced by traditional dungeon delving style games. Action is very densely packed and crucial rolls are quite likely to be found near each other. Real time Luck offers a chance of having multiple rerolls in a single scene which can be significant in these sorts of circumstances. If the pacing is functioning as intended and hasn't degenerated into things like 15 minute adventuring days you could spend several sessions playing a single day which makes one reroll a day frustrating for the player even if it is balanced. The time between dense moments of action incorporates less rolls, generally with less stakes and under easier circumstances than rolls during the more action packed moments which makes always having a reroll while you are, say, travelling between dungeons much less useful.

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Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
If, however, your session structure always goes something like "Small fight, travel, larger fight, search, boss fight" that gets to be a cliché.
Oh I see what you mean. Yes that would get old eventually.

Last edited by Sindri; 11-04-2014 at 01:25 PM.
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Old 11-04-2014, 01:52 PM   #8
johndallman
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
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Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
Action is very densely packed and crucial rolls are quite likely to be found near each other. Real time Luck offers a chance of having multiple rerolls in a single scene which can be significant in these sorts of circumstances.
Well, that might produce something like "Luck recharges after 20 rounds of combat" or "Luck recharges every time the relevant PC rolls a critical success".

However, you have to consider your attitude to the recharge system being gamed by your players. One of the advantages of player-time luck is that timewasting is generally not entertaining for the player doing it, still less the other players. Those two examples above, which I just invented (or conceivably re-invented), have their own gameability.

If Luck recharges in terms of rounds of combat, you can expect more all-out defences and Evaluates, and less pressure to win fights ASAP.

If it recharges off critical successes, players will avoid reduce their use of penalties for things like Deceptive Attacks, so that they get more rolls at 15 or 16, and more critical successes.
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Old 11-04-2014, 02:22 PM   #9
Sindri
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Default Re: Alternate Ratio for Game Time Modifier

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Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
Well, that might produce something like "Luck recharges after 20 rounds of combat" or "Luck recharges every time the relevant PC rolls a critical success".

However, you have to consider your attitude to the recharge system being gamed by your players. One of the advantages of player-time luck is that timewasting is generally not entertaining for the player doing it, still less the other players. Those two examples above, which I just invented (or conceivably re-invented), have their own gameability.

If Luck recharges in terms of rounds of combat, you can expect more all-out defences and Evaluates, and less pressure to win fights ASAP.

If it recharges off critical successes, players will avoid reduce their use of penalties for things like Deceptive Attacks, so that they get more rolls at 15 or 16, and more critical successes.
A recharge every 20 seconds seems too fast even for me and I'd rather not have alternate combat/noncombat recharge rates even though it has clear advantages. Recharging every critical success is tempting since it makes recharge rates scale with attention paid to a period of in game time but it would significantly reduce the reliability of Luck's safety insurance. I'll have to think about it.

One of the disadvantages of real time Luck is that it incentivizes stalling for time which is unfun. Replacing that gameability with something like drawing out in game combats seems to be a generally good trade. One thing I've contemplated to reduce this sort of gameability is to make Luck only have a chance of recharging when it would be triggered instead of being automatic.

I tend to think it's very rarely worth voluntarily going below skill 16 anyway, so that wouldn't bother me. It's less than ideal for Luck to be stronger with greater skill levels but that's not a terrible flaw.
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